November 8, 2017

A new effort to combat revenge porn on Facebook encourages users to ... send nude photos.

In April, Facebook announced an algorithm that uses one sample photo to identify similar photos and remove them from the social media platform. That algorithm is now being put into practice to help users remove photos that were shared without their consent. Here's the catch: Facebook needs to have a nude photo to recognize and delete a nude photo.

Facebook is thus encouraging users to send their intimate snapshots to themselves via the company's Messenger app, to enable the company to use its image-matching technology as a protective measure. CNBC reports Facebook's anti-revenge porn pilot program is available in the U.S., U.K., and Canada. Australia's eSafety Office additionally announced a partnership with Facebook using this algorithm earlier this month.

Facebook is using algorithms to address issues outside of revenge porn, too: The company recently concluded a trial to prevent the spread of fake news on social media after pledging to address the issue in August, the BBC reports. Facebook's algorithm elevated comments like "fake news" to the top of feeds on shared articles — but the plan backfired when "fake news" appeared at the top of comment sections on articles from reputable news sites like The New York Times, BBC, and The Guardian. Elianna Spitzer

10:14 a.m.

Body cameras were supposed to build trust between police and the people they serve. Their price is getting in the way.

In the wake of highly publicized police shootings, only occasionally recorded by bystanders but often sparking protests, police departments invested in body cameras to promote accountability. But small police departments have since been unable to maintain the cost of storing footage, and so they're ditching body camera programs quickly after they began, The Washington Post reports.

Of the 1,800 departments that "reported a fatal officer-involved shooting since 2015," nearly 1,300 of those departments had 50 or fewer officers, the Post reports via its police shooting database. That means smaller departments often need body camera accountability the most, and Justice Department grants have helped them cover $70 million in initial equipment costs.

Since the programs' implementation, though, departments have faced unexpected annual costs to keep the cameras rolling. A five-officer department in Nebraska couldn't justify spending $15,000 each year to store footage for at least 90 days, as a state law required. So it ditched the program in November, the Post says. The department of Arlington County, Virginia, rejected a pilot program right off the bat after learning it would cost $300,000 each year.

Beyond the cost of storage, there are concerns over the time it takes public defense attorneys to prepare video evidence for trial. Virginia calculates that for every 75 body cameras, it would need to hire another defense attorney, paralegal, or administrator. That rings up a charge of $6.4 million per year, the Post says. Read more about the unexpected cost of body cameras at The Washington Post. Kathryn Krawczyk

10:03 a.m.

The 2019 Oscar nominations brought about plenty of firsts, including for Netflix, comic book movies, and Spike Lee.

Roma is the first Netflix movie to ever be nominated for Best Picture. The movie from Alfonso Cuarón earned 10 nominations and is widely considered to be the frontrunner to win. This isn't the first time a movie from any streaming service has received a Best Picture nomination, though, as Amazon's Manchester by the Sea beat Netflix to the punch in 2017.

Hulu also earned its first Oscar nomination ever this year for Minding the Gap, which was nominated for Best Documentary Feature.

With Roma getting its Best Picture nod, producer Gabriela Rodriguez becomes the first Hispanic woman ever to earn a nomination in that category, The Hollywood Reporter points out. Additionally, Roma's Cuarón is the first person to be nominated for Best Cinematography and Best Director in the same year for one movie, IndieWire reports.

Black Panther also became the first superhero film to ever be nominated for Best Picture. This comes 10 years after The Dark Knight was famously snubbed for a Best Picture nomination in 2009, which contributed to the Academy's decision to expand that category to more than five movies.

Speaking of Black Panther, the film received a Best Production Design nomination as well, and Hannah Beachler therefore became the first black woman ever nominated in that category, The New York Times' Kyle Buchanan points out.

Best Director this year consists of both Pawel Pawlikowski (Cold War) and Alfonso Cuarón (Roma), which, according to the Reporter, is the first time ever that the category has included two movies also nominated for Best Foreign Language film.

Finally, Spike Lee, believe it or not, also received his first nomination ever for Best Director for BlacKkKlansman, while Sam Elliott received his first ever acting nomination for Best Supporting Actor in A Star Is Born. Brendan Morrow

9:23 a.m.

The 2019 Academy Award nominations have arrived.

In the top category of Best Picture, the nominees are BlacKkKlansman, Black Panther, Bohemian Rhapsody, The Favourite, Green Book, Roma, A Star Is Born, and Vice.

Roma and The Favourite led the pack with 10 nominations each. It was a great morning for Roma in particular, scoring unexpected nominations for Best Actress and Best Supporting Actress. The Netflix film is looking set to be the Best Picture frontrunner and could become the first foreign language film to ever win the top prize.

A Star Is Born earned eight nominations, but in one of the morning's biggest surprises, Bradley Cooper was not nominated for Best Director. He did, however, receive a Best Actor nod. Strangely, A Star Is Born and Roma were both left out of Best Film Editing, a category in which the Best Picture winner is almost always nominated.

The nominees for Best Actor are Christian Bale (Vice), Willem Dafoe (At Eternity's Gate), Bradley Cooper (A Star Is Born), Rami Malek (Bohemian Rhapsody), and Viggo Mortensen (Green Book), while Best Actress consists of Olivia Colman (The Favourite), Glenn Close (The Wife), Lady Gaga (A Star Is Born), Melissa McCarthy (Can You Ever Forgive Me?), and Yalitza Aparicio (Roma).

In Best Supporting Actor, the nominees are Mahershala Ali (Green Book), Adam Driver (BlacKkKlansman), Sam Elliott (A Star Is Born), Richard E. Grant (Can You Ever Forgive Me?), and Sam Rockwell (Vice), while the nominees for Best Supporting Actress are Amy Adams (Vice), Regina King (If Beale Street Could Talk), Emma Stone (The Favourite), Marina De Tavira (Roma), and Rachel Weisz (The Favourite).

The Oscars, which are not expected to have a host, will take place on Feb. 24. Read the full list of nominees at The Hollywood Reporter. Brendan Morrow

8:24 a.m.

Glass topped the Martin Luther King Jr. Day weekend box office, giving M. Night Shyamalan his best debut in years but still falling short of expectations.

The thriller, which is the last stop in a trilogy that began with Unbreakable in 2000, took in $47.1 million from Friday to Monday, with $40.6 million coming in its first three days, according to The Hollywood Reporter. That's certainly a solid result for the film, which Forbes notes only cost $20 million to make, and it's Shyamalan's best opening since 2004's The Village, unadjusted for inflation.

The total is, however, below expectations, as tracking last week suggested the movie could make as much as $70 million over its first four days, Variety reported. This may be the result of poor reviews, as Glass earned a Rotten Tomatoes score of 37 percent compared to 76 percent for Split, which opened to $40 million. Universal told The Hollywood Reporter Glass's performance was within "reasonable expectations" but said the weather may have prevented more moviegoers from turning out.

Meanwhile, The Upside, starring Kevin Hart and Bryan Cranston, had a phenomenal second weekend, taking in $18.3 million over four days, per The Los Angeles Times. Its three-day total is a drop of only 23 percent from its already impressive debut, Box Office Mojo reports. There was a lot working against the film, including Hart's homophobic jokes controversy and a low Rotten Tomatoes score, but it has become an unexpected hit.

Aquaman also reached another milestone this weekend, passing the $300 million mark domestically. It is close to overtaking The Dark Knight Rises and becoming the highest grossing D.C. movie ever. Brendan Morrow

7:10 a.m.

French officials said Tuesday that police in Paris have detained singer Chris Brown and two other people after a woman filed a rape complaint. Brown faces aggravated rape and drug-related charges, a French judicial official tells The Associated Press, and investigators have another two days to decide whether to charge him or let him go. One of Brown's bodyguards is among the people detained, AP reports. A rape conviction in France can carry a prison sentence of up to 15 years, Reuters notes.

The woman who filed the rape complaint says she met Brown and some of his friends at a club in Paris on Wednesday, and they all ended up at the Mandarin Oriental Hotel near the city's central Concorde Plaza, the official tells AP. In 2009, Brown pleaded guilty to felony assault of Rihanna, who was his girlfriend at the time. He's been in and out of legal trouble since. Peter Weber

6:50 a.m.

In a New York Times report Sunday on President Trump's chaotic, sometimes Pyrrhic, remarkably consistent negotiating style, former Trump Organization vice president Barbara Res explained one reason she believes Trump is having such a hard time ending his government shutdown: House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.). "There was never a woman with power that he ran up against, until Pelosi," Res said. "And he doesn't know what to do with it. He's totally in a corner."

Res elaborated Monday night on MSNBC's The 11th Hour. "There are certain basic tenets of negotiation that Trump does not believe in," like the "win-win" deal or give-and-take, she told guest host Nicole Wallace. Trump's "I demand, and this is what I'm going to get" strategy "has worked for him in certain circumstances where he had all the leverage" and power, but "now he doesn't have either."

"Trump has always felt that men are superior to women, and he even told me that," Res said. "So in his mind, any woman would be inferior to him, even the best of the best. And here's Nancy Pelosi, she probably is the best of the best. Problem is, she's his match, she's not inferior to him, she's — in my opinion, from a point of view of dealmaking — far superior." Trump "can't see" that he "100 percent" could end the shutdown anytime he chooses, she added, and when Wallace asked how this will all end, Res said she doesn't know. "I think, eventually, somebody's going to have to blink," she said, and if Trump rejects a compromise from Democrats, "I think he's going to be in very, very big trouble."

Tony Schwartz, who wrote Trump's The Art of the Deal, told the Times that Trump "was always a terrible negotiator," and his only "virtue" is his use of "a hammer, deceit, relentlessness, and an absence of conscience," and his apathy about any "collateral damage" he leaves behind.

5:33 a.m.

Newly sworn-in Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) has never served in a Congress where the government was open, Stephen Colbert pointed out to her on Monday's Late Show. He gave her a pint of Ben & Jerry's and a spoon and asked what that's been like. For her and the other 100 or so House freshmen, she said, "the downside is that we're not able to get to work as much as we want to in the beginning, but the bright side is that it gives us a lot more free time to make trouble," like trying to track down Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.).

Ocasio-Cortez explained that in her social media workshop for Democrats, "I gave them more of my general theory and approach to social media," where "Rule No. 1 is to be authentic, to be yourself, and don't try to be anyone that you're not. So don't try to talk like a young kid if you're not a young kid, don't post a meme if you don't know what a meme is," and "don't talk like the Founding Fathers on Twitter."

Ocasio-Cortez is so good at social media, "she's known for hosting Instagram live Q&A's while cooking dinner," Colbert explained before the interview. "That's impressive. My wife once asked me a question while I was making a grilled cheese sandwich, and I ended up in the emergency room."

Colbert asked Ocasio-Cortez about her plan to tax rich guys like himself at a 70 percent marginal rate. "This is something we often see, too, with Fox News, it's like, 'They want to take all your money!'" she said. But the 70 percent marginal tax rate would apply only to the dollars you make each year after you hit $10 million. Colbert pointed out that cries of "'She's a socialist, she wants 70 percent tax rates,' those are both accurate, right?" She laughed and said yes, but "democratic socialist," which is "very different." Peter Weber

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